Contact Us: 833-879-7734

Communication Options for Families

What options are available if you have questions or disagree with a decision of the school?

Families and schools have a “built-in” partnership with the child as the focus.This partnership will grow when parents and school staff work together. Disagreements may happen, but working together improves your child’s education.

What can you do if questions or concerns arise?

  • If concerns arise, families are encouraged to first talk directly with the people involved as soon as possible

  • Call to schedule an informal meeting to discuss the situation

  • Prepare for the meeting by making a list of concerns and some possible solutions

What can you do in the meeting?

  • See if you can agree on the concerns that must be addressed

  • Listen actively to understand the other person’s perspective

  • Communicate your concerns clearly

  • Ask and restate questions so you and others are clear in your understanding

  • Work together to suggest some possible options to resolve the concerns

  • Analyze all of the options to see if you can find areas of agreement

What if concerns are not fully resolved in the meeting?

  • Request that the IEP team meet again and consider including additional team members

  • Call others for suggestions on possible future action

Problem solving locally gives families and school districts more collaborative options on outcomes for children.

Next Steps if these attempts at solving problems don’t work.

  • Facilitated IEP: An option for early conflict resolution that Wisconsin has chosen to make available to families and schools. A neutral, trained mediator helps the IEP team with the IEP process.

  • Mediation: An option for early conflict resolution available at no cost to families and schools. A mediator helps families and schools work toward resolution on special education conflicts/issues.

  • IDEA State Complaints: Anyone who believes a school district did not follow state or federal special education law has the right to file a complaint with DPI.

  • Due Process Hearings: Parents, adult students, and schools districts have the right to request due process hearings for special education disputes.

Access to WSPEI Family Engagement Coordinators and the WI Special Education Mediation System are provided at no cost for families or school districts.

Contact the WSPEI Family Information and Support Specialist Team
at 833-879-7734 or 833(USWSPEI) | E-mail